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55th OAR General Chapter PDF Print E-mail
Written by augustinian recollects   
Monday, 24 October 2016 14:54

Last Updated on Monday, 24 October 2016 14:56
Intercessions for the 55th General Chapter PDF Print E-mail
Written by augustinian recollects   
Wednesday, 07 September 2016 14:09


S. Lord, you promised your presence to those who gather in your name. Assist our Chapter delegates so that what they accomplish may be done in your name and may be for the good of the Order and of your Church.

M. Lord, you animate your Church with the fire of the Holy Spirit and direct it with your light. Assist the members of our Chapter that they may discern your will and know how to transmit it to the brothers.

T. Lord, you prayed to the Father that all might be one, as you and the Father are one. Grant that such unity may be achieved among the brothers assembled in the Chapter as a sign of the unity among all the brothers.

W. You entrusted your Church to Peter and the apostles. Enlighten those who have the duty to elect the brothers who are to direct the life of the Order in your name.

T. Lord Jesus, you called happy those who are poor and humble of heart. Enable us to recognize those who, in your name, will rightly reveal your plans for us.

F. Kind Father, you enlighten and strengthen us with your Spirit. Help those who are assembled in your name in their task of rightly ordering and moving the life of our Order.

S. Lord, you are present in the midst of those who gather in your name. Enlighten our brothers so that, in all their works, they may take into account the needs of the Order and of the Church.




S. Lord, from of old you have communicated with us by means of the prophets. Grant that all those in the Chapter may be true prophets of your kingdom and that, faithful to your call, they may accomplish the mission you have entrusted to them.

M. O God, you are the only foundation of our hope. Grant us a Prior General according to your heart, who will nourish in the brothers their hunger for you and will guide the Order in the fulfillment of your plans.

T. Father, you govern us with love. Grant that those who are elected for the government of the Order may show to all the brothers the love with which you love us.

W. Lord, you commanded Peter to care for his brothers. See that the superiors who are named in the Chapter be solicitous in the service of the brothers, zealous for the glory of the Father, and faithful to the promises of religious life.

T. Lord, you promised your presence to those who gather in your name. Assist our Chapter delegates so that what they accomplish may be done in your name and may be for the good of the Order and of your Church.

F. Lord, you animate your Church with the fire of the Holy Spirit and direct it with your light. Assist the members of our Chapter that they may discern your will and know how to transmit it to the brothers.

S. Lord, you prayed to the Father that all might be one, as you and the Father are one. Grant that such unity may be achieved among the brothers assembled in the Chapter as a sign of the unity among all the brothers.



Last Updated on Wednesday, 07 September 2016 14:11
Prayer for the 55th General Chapter PDF Print E-mail
Written by augustinian recollects   
Wednesday, 07 September 2016 13:21


That the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy

may usher in a new time for our Order;

may the Door of Grace be opened for us,

and let us never cease to wonder

at the limitless horizon of hope;

in our restructuring,

may we not see mountains that block our way,

but rather the chance to explore, hand-in-hand with you,

paths both new and wonderful.

Prepare us

for the forthcoming General Chapter.

Make us

worthy of our history,

and of our saints.

Give us

trust in you alone,

a personal life transfixed by your love.

Give us

community life

founded in Mercy toward our brothers.

Give us

generosity, discernment and the necessary wisdom

to dedicate ourselves to our common enterprise

of passing on your Mercy.

Give us what you command

and command what you will,

for all our hope is in your great Mercy.



Last Updated on Wednesday, 07 September 2016 13:22
Saint Augustine, saint and seal PDF Print E-mail
Written by augustinian recollects   
Sunday, 04 September 2016 14:48

For almost three centuries, the Augustinian recollects identified themselves in the Church with this representation of St. Augustine.  Today, August 28, the liturgical feast of the Saint of Hippo, once again we raise the old emblem and knit over it a brief reflection.

2016-08-28 Comunicaciones OAR

The Augustinian recollects identified themselves with St. Augustine right from the start.  And it could not be in any other way, proclaiming him by word and through plastic representations.  Among these, the official seal of the Recollection occupies the highest place, which remained untouched for almost three centuries.  On that seal they champion an Augustine kneeling before the Crucified Christ of normal size, portrayed as living Christ.

The St. Augustine on the seal of the Order is barefooted and clothed as recollect.  Portrayed also as bishop, but the episcopal ensigns –staff and miter are on the ground as if showing disregard of the honor and title as a bishop.   It is clear that it wants to portray a concrete image of the Saint, as real saint.

But the habit does not make a monk much less a saint.  It is not the representation of Augustine that matters: being a bishop or not, neither a recollect nor Augustinian… just as in saying that renewal does not consist in knowing better the doctrine and life of our Father.  These days we know about St. Augustine much better than our predecessors.  And we have at our disposal countless and better instruments at the hour of looking for quotations and data.  But it is not because of this that we say we are better Augustinian Recollects.

What is more important in the representation of St. Augustine is the kneeling Augustine before the Crucified Christ.  His gesture of adoration, his posture of contemplation and the bareness of everything else.  In this lies the recollect originality, the newness of his inspiration.

At the time of inception of the Recollection, towards the end of the 16th century, the Augustinian Order was in its moment of grandeur which sums up figures of great importance, monumental churches and monasteries, admirable evangelizing enterprises.   But nothing of that sort is important as how the recollects would say.  What matters are not the statistics, nor the structures, nor the works, of whatever kind they may be.

The Recollection wants to reassert the radical experience of Augustine, depicted in this seal.  The experience of the encounter with Christ.  A personal and direct encounter with Christ, with a bare Christ nailed on the cross. This is what we call “prayer”, in all its true and deep sense of the word.  “Knowledge and Love” of God; and the more in parishes, missions, schools, the better.  But in as much and is always they are revitalized by prayer.

Today, we are invited on it, on this day of St. Augustine. It is good that we know better our Father; that we show his doctrine the best way possible; that we educate augustinologists and spread everywhere the mind of the Saint.  But an Augustinian Recollect will only be when, taking aside all the rest, daily cultivate the encounter and dialogue with the Lord and Glory of the Cross.

(From the OAR website: agustinosrecoletos.com)


Last Updated on Sunday, 04 September 2016 14:54
Why this bishop from the US is now one step closer to being a saint PDF Print E-mail
Written by editor   
Friday, 22 July 2016 15:16

From the Catholic News Agency (CNA) website: http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/why-this-bishop-from-the-us-is-now-one-step-closer-to-being-a-saint-22772/


Sacramento, Calif., Jul 15, 2016 / 12:02 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- On July 8 Pope Francis authorized the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to promulgate a decree recognizing the heroic virtues of Servant of God Alphonse Gallegos, who was auxiliary bishop of Sacramento from 1981 to 1991.

The late bishop is now called Venerable, and only one miracle worked through his intercession is needed before he can be beatified.

“This is wonderful news for all those who knew him,” Fr. Eliseo Gonzalez, vice-postulator of Venerable Gallegos' cause of canonization, told CNA.

Fr. Gonzalez is a member of the Order of Augustinian Recollects, in which Bishop Gallegos was ordained a priest in 1958. Since the cause for canonization opened in December 2005, Fr. Gonzalez has been working to tell the bishop’s story.

He explained that many people who knew Bishop Gallegos considered him a “living saint.”

The bishop was born Feb. 20, 1931 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and was the eighth of 11 children.  His mother and father, Caciana and Joseph Gallegos, were very pious, according to testimonies collected for the canonization cause. The family prayed daily rosaries together and often had lessons on the catechism.

Bishop Gallegos was born with a “severe myopic condition” impacting his eyesight. Though he had many surgeries, the bishop’s poor vision “remained chronic.”

In an effort to seek “better educational opportunities for their children as well as medical treatment for him,” Venerable Gallegos’ parents moved the family to Los Angeles in the early 1930s.

It was there that Bishop Gallegos found his religious vocation. The family put down roots in an area known as “Watts”, and they began attending San Miguel parish, which was run by the Order of Augustinian Recollects. Bishop Gallegos began “nurturing a deep desire to follow the religious life.”

Venerable Gallegos entered the Order of Augustinian Recollects as a novice in 1950. A year later, he professed his first vows, and his solemn vows three years later.

“His visual handicap, however, limited his ability to read and to master all the study requirements for the advancement to the priesthood,” his biography explained.

In 1954, Venerable Gallegos was moved to the order’s major seminary, Tagaste Monastery, in Suffern, New York. But his vision worsened, making his studies more difficult. He had great difficulty reading his breviary so he was given a dispensation to pray the rosary instead.

“His situation was such that doubts were raised concerning his preparation for the priesthood,” but he was ordained a priest May 24, 1958, given his holiness, humility, and community spirit.

Venerable Gallegos’ ministry as a priest began at Tagaste Monastery. He spent eight years working with the neighboring hospitals and religious communities. After, he was appointed novice master for the Augustinian Recollects' Province of St. Augustine in Kansas City, Kansas.  In 1972, he returned home to be pastor at his home parish in Watts.

The neighborhood was predominantly African-American and poor. Riots in the 1960s had left the area divided and filled with gangs, crime, and poverty. The priest made it his priority to focus on the local children, greeting them daily at the parish’s school.

On the weekends, Venerable Gallegos would spend time with the lowriders of the community, blessing their cars and encouraging the Hispanic youth to pursue a college education. He also took care of the elderly and opened his home to anyone in need. He later served at Cristo Rey parish.

Word spread of his service, and in 1979 Venerable Gallegos was appointed director of the newly-created Hispanic affairs office of the California Catholic Conference. In this role he worked with bishops in both northern Mexico and California on such issues as immigration and evangelization. His work there led to his appointment as auxiliary bishop of Sacramento in 1981.

“He was Hispanic, yet he ministered to a very diverse group of people,” Olympia Nunez, Venerable Gallegos' long-time secretary, told CNA.

“We had a Korean community, Chinese, African-American, Hispanic, and he was the person in charge of all these groups.”

Nunez said the bishop was incredibly kind and outgoing, and never complained about his disability.

“Once a year for his birthday, everyone got together and celebrated with different ethnic foods and customs,” Nunez reflected. “He brought all these people together.”

The bishop’s episcopal motto was “love one another.” He advocated for the culture of life, and personally paid Catholic school tuition for the poor.

Fr. Gonzalez called Bishop Gallegos an inspiration and example of hope and fortitude for all.

“If he was able to accomplish such great things, why can’t we? With God’s help we can also accomplish great things.”

On Oct. 6, 1991, Bishop Gallegos and his driver were returning home from Gridley, about 60 miles north of Sacramento. They had car troubles, so the two got out and started pushing the car to the side of the road. Another vehicle, driving in the same direction, struck the bishop.

More than 2,000 people were present at his funeral, and lowriders formed one of the longest funeral processions ever documented.

In addition to his pastoral concern for the poor, Venerable Gallegos was known for his commitment to the culture of life. He had been at a gathering in Gridley to pray the rosary for an end to abortion the day he died.

With the announcement of the bishop's cause advancing, Nunez said: “He doesn’t belong to just Sacramento or California, he now belongs to the United States in general, and to the world, as an example of a good, humble, generous human being.”

In order for him to be canonized, two miracles through the intercession of Venerable Alphonse Gallegos must be verified.

The faithful are encouraged to visit Venerable Alphonse Gallegos’ body at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in downtown Sacramento, his life-size statue in Bishop Gallegos Square, and a mini-museum displaying the bishop’s personal items in Oxnard, some 65 miles west of Los Angeles.

(Article taken from the Catholic News Agency (CNA) website: http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/why-this-bishop-from-the-us-is-now-one-step-closer-to-being-a-saint-22772/)



Last Updated on Friday, 22 July 2016 15:25
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